John 6:51–59 and the Eucharist
LE3 .A278 2017
Zacharias, H. Daniel
Master of Arts
The intension of this study is to determine the viability for interpreting John 6:51–59 as a Eucharistic passage. Scholarship is divided on the topic because of the Fourth Gospel’s omission of the Lord’s Supper in the upper room prior to the death of Jesus. However, this omission does not mean that the Evangelist was anti-sacramental. In fact, what is shown in this study is that the Fourth Gospel has an abundance of sacramental imagery. Even though theological inquiry may be ascertained, the purpose of this study is to create the foundation through using the biblical data for further theological postulation. The method that is applied is an exegetical study of John 6:51-59 in comparison with other New Testament texts connected with the Eucharist. Chapter one explores the immediate and broad context of John 6:51–59 while conducting a detailed commentary of the passage of study. This is supplemented with a brief discussion on symbolism in the Fourth Gospel. Chapter two is concerned with surveying sacramental imagery in the Fourth Gospel with the purpose of supporting a Eucharistic interpretation of the passage of study. Chapter three surveys various New Testament text that contribute to an understanding of the Eucharist. These texts are compared linguistically through finding common words and phrases. Chapter four concludes the study with a comprehensive summary of the previous chapters and possible theological theories as to why Eucharistic imagery is present in John 6:51–59. Through the research provided, it is determined that John 6:51–59 is best understood as a Eucharistic text that highlights the importance of the Eucharist for the Christian community of the Evangelist.
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